Gardeners’ World star Monty Don has issued an apology to his family over a “deeply humiliating experience” he endured which went on to change him. The popular BBC horticulturalist, 66, candidly addressed a time in his life when he was “on the dole” having lost “everything” following the collapse of his costume jewellery business after the stock market crash in 1987.
Addressing the difficult period in his life, Monty spoke about the business he and his wife Sarah used to own.
However, following the collapse of the economy in the late 1980s, the star explained how he and his family lost “everything.”
He said: “Then I found myself having lost my house and my business and everything and I started to do some television which cropped up at the same time.”
The star added that he was happy to do it as he “desperately needed money”.
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However, Monty went on to reveal that soon after taking on TV work he was told he wasn’t needed anymore as his appearances were replayed, which he admitted to not understanding at the time.
Following the loss of TV work, the star candidly opened up about going “on the dole”.
He even explained how he ended up mowing the lawn of the local churchyard for £10 a time to get money to buy food for his family.
Being 35 years old at the time, Monty reflected on the difficult period in his life and frankly stated that he thought he’d “never work again”.
Speaking about Sarah’s openness, Monty branded it “the best thing” that his wife could have said to him, he told Tim Samuels on The Brilliant Brain podcast.
Monty and Sarah moved to Longmeadow, in Herefordshire, the West Midlands, four years after the stock market crash.
When they bought the property, it featured a two-acre abandoned field and just one tree.
Over the years, Monty has established his famous Jewel garden, as well as a Cottage garden, Spring garden and Fruit garden.
The star also has a family vegetable plot, hen house and beehives.
In his books and TV series, Monty reveals how he painstakingly spent the following years devoting himself to creating the garden of his dreams.
On his website, the professional gardener revealed planning for the garden started two years after they moved into the property and “has never really ceased since”.
In 2003 Monty was announced as the lead presenter of Gardeners’ World which has been filmed from his garden for the last decade.